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2019 Spring - Managing agriculture’s ecosystem services

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FPJ1603D - Admassu, S, Fox, T & McRobert, K (2019), Lessons from the UK on ecosystem services models

Admassu, S, Fox, T & McRobert, K (2019), Lessons from the UK on ecosystem services models, in Farm Policy Journal, vol. 16, no. 3, Spring 2019, pp. 24-34, Surry Hills, Australia.

Payment for ecosystem services (PES) as both reward and incentive to those who invest in care for the environment is becoming a popular mechanism to protect biodiversity and natural environments throughout the world. Australian agriculture has a strong focus on natural resource management through government-supported programs, but a mature market for buying and selling ecosystem services has yet to be established. While food production is a public good, agriculture in Australia is an industry and changes made to farming systems must be supported within the business model of the sector. PES schemes such as those established in the United Kingdom (UK) offer frameworks to conserve the environment and simultaneously offer new sources of farm-based income. Lessons from the UK schemes show that a clear value proposition for both buyer and seller of the services backed by robust data are necessary for success.

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